Kelly gets school’s pirate ship off to a golden start

Gymnast Kelly Simm with pupils, from left, Lilly Enfield, Mia Osborne, Emilie Nelson, Grace Nelson, Charlie Felton, Blake Nelson, Austen Bainbridge, Seb Wilkinson and Zoe Kilmister.

Picture: Sarah Standing (170786-3701)
Gymnast Kelly Simm with pupils, from left, Lilly Enfield, Mia Osborne, Emilie Nelson, Grace Nelson, Charlie Felton, Blake Nelson, Austen Bainbridge, Seb Wilkinson and Zoe Kilmister. Picture: Sarah Standing (170786-3701)
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A gold medal gymnast handed over a cheque to a delighted school as they splashed the cash on a ship – docked in the playground.

Commonwealth champion Kelly Simm, 22, presented the money to Locks Heath Infant School after they received a grant from a supermarket giant.

The school, which received £10,000 from Tesco’s ‘Bags of Help’ initiative, have spent its money on a new pirate ship for the children, which was finished on Tuesday.

Tesco’s community scheme aims to generate revenue made by the sale of 5p carrier bags back into the community.

Anita Keelor, admin officer for the Infant School, said: ‘We decided we wanted to have a pirate ship built in the school playground.

‘We are so chuffed with it. It’s not about books and pencils; it is something well and above what a school could afford.

‘It’s for the existing children but also for the next generation of children to come.’

‘We filled out an application form which then went to a panel,’ Anita said.

‘They assured it went to a public vote where 5 grants were given out.’

Locks Heath Infant School, together with the Junior School, received two of the five grants respectively. The latter benefited from a £12,000 bonus from the initiative.

As for the visit of Kelly Simm, Anita was quick to praise her involvement with the school.

‘She is from the area, and gets on so well with the children,’ she said.

The gymnast, from Whiteley, cut the rope for the new pirate ship.

She said: ‘It’s great. It’s really colourful and there’s so many children on it already.

‘It’s really special to see how well the kids are getting on. It’s important for the kids to be able to use their imagination and have fun.’